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Mark 5:41

ESV Taking her by the hand he said to her, “Talitha cumi,” which means, “Little girl, I say to you, arise.”
NIV He took her by the hand and said to her, 'Talitha koum!' (which means 'Little girl, I say to you, get up!').
NASB And taking the child by the hand, He *said to her, 'Talitha, kum!' (which translated means, 'Little girl, I say to you, get up!').
CSB Then he took the child by the hand and said to her, "Talitha koum" (which is translated, "Little girl, I say to you, get up").
NLT Holding her hand, he said to her, 'Talitha koum,' which means 'Little girl, get up!'
KJV And he took the damsel by the hand, and said unto her, Talitha cumi; which is, being interpreted, Damsel, I say unto thee, arise.

What does Mark 5:41 mean?

When Jesus arrives at Jairus' house, He insists the girl is not dead but only "sleeping." This is meant for metaphorical intent: she had physically died, but Jesus fully intends for the girl's death to be temporary, like sleep. His actions now support His decision. He doesn't lay His hands on her or anoint her with oil and pray. He takes her hand and helps her up, as if she is already on the cusp of waking.

The Greek root word for "taking" is krateo and means to hold securely with power. "Hand" is from the Greek root word cheir which infers a power that is used to help. As casual as Jesus' words and gestures seem to be, the actual healing does take the power of the Holy Spirit. Changing the nature of this small piece of the universe is hard work.

The phrase talitha cumi is Aramaic and basically means "little girl, get up," or "child, arise," as Luke interprets it (Luke 8:54). It is thought that Mark included the literal Aramaic to prove that Jesus uses mere words, not a magical spell.

This inclusion is still relevant two thousand years later. Jesus did not raise the girl by His words but because He is the Word. "Word," as used in John 1, is from the Greek word logos and means word or principle or thought. It means the divine reason, the mind of God. Words have power and authority when they express the intent of God, not when they repeat particular phrases. "Amen," the text of the Lord's prayer, the sinner's prayer, even baptizing in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit get their significance from the intent of the speaker as they express the will of God, not the sounds made when the words are pronounced.

Our faith is not defined by standard prayers, liturgical readings, or magic words, but by our faith, God's grace, and Jesus' work.
What is the Gospel?
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